Beimel's status in jeopardy
Left-handed reliever injured in freak accident in hotel room
NEW YORK -- Reliever Joe Beimel suffered a bloody gash to his pitching hand in a freak hotel accident Tuesday morning, leaving him in stitches and the Dodgers bullpen roster spots in limbo for Wednesday's opener of the National League Division Series with the Mets.
Beimel said he cut his left hand on broken glass in his hotel room after waking up to get a drink of water.
"I got up, went to the faucet in the bathroom, got the drink, was going to set down the glass, and it slipped out of my hand and I tried to catch it and wound up just spiking it into the sink," said Beimel.
"I thought it was just a cut, but when I looked at it, it was really deep. I wish I had a better story, like I was trying to save a baby or something. This is just crazy how it happened."
Beimel was one of the unexpected and unsung heroes of the season. He didn't make the club out of Spring Training as a non-roster pitcher, yet he emerged as the workhorse left-handed reliever.
Beimel went 2-1 with a 2.96 ERA and two saves, including Sunday's regular-season finale. He appeared in 62 games with 70 innings and had a 1.32 ERA over the final month of the season. Beimel pitched 2 1/3 innings against the Mets this year without allowing a run, and his absence from the bullpen would be huge.
Beimel, who spent Tuesday's workout in the clubhouse, had his pinkie finger bandaged, and it appeared swollen. He showed that the cut begins on the side of his pinkie finger and extends deep into the webbing between the pinkie and ring finger of his throwing hand.
He said he believes the pain he's experiencing is "probably from the stitches," and said he wasn't sure how many stitches doctors needed to close the wound.
"I didn't ask," Beimel said. "I didn't look and didn't want to know."
Dodgers manager Grady Little said "we'll know in the morning" if Beimel would be on the roster, because the pitcher will attempt to throw before rosters must be submitted Wednesday. Beimel said he held out hope that he would be OK.
"I haven't tried to hold a ball because it hurts from the stitches and it's still bleeding, but I think I'll be able to throw," Beimel said. "It's not in a spot where the ball really rubs. It's just that we can't keep it from bleeding."
Before learning of Beimel's injury, the Dodgers tentatively had decided the final spots for a 10-man pitching staff for the series with the Mets. Pitchers on the bubble who were expected to make it were Aaron Sele and Mark Hendrickson, while Elmer Dessens and rookie Chad Billingsley apparently would be left off.
The only other player to make the trip and not make the roster will be Einar Diaz, a third catcher and no surprise. The other seven pitchers (not counting Beimel): Derek Lowe (Game 1 starter), Hong-Chih Kuo (Game 2 starter), Greg Maddux (Game 3 starter), Brad Penny, Takashi Saito, Jonathan Broxton and Brett Tomko.
The Dodgers will carry 10 pitchers so they can have an additional position player -- rookie first baseman James Loney -- as insurance because of the uncertain physical condition of starting first baseman Nomar Garciaparra, who is plagued by oblique, quad and knee injuries. The oblique injury can sideline Garciaparra with just one swing, as it did Friday night in San Francisco.
To overcome the lack of one reliever, the Dodgers will have Penny in the bullpen for Games 1 and 2. After Maddux starts Game 3, Penny would be a likely Game 4 starter, if needed, with Lowe coming back for a Game 5, if needed.
Little said his lineups would reflect those used throughout September, including a platoon of Wilson Betemit (against right-handed starters) and Julio Lugo (against left-handed starters) at third base. Marlon Anderson, who replaced rookie Andre Ethier as the everyday left fielder in September, is expected to start regardless of the pitcher.
Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.